Billie Eilish earns her second No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 chart, as her latest release, Happier Than Ever, debuts atop the list with 238,000 equivalent album units earned in the U.S. in the week ending Aug. 5, according to MRC Data. Happier launches with the fifth-largest week of 2021 by equivalent album units earned. The year’s biggest week belongs to Olivia Rodrigo’s Sour, which charged in at No. 1 on the June 5 chart with 295,000 units.
Happier is Eilish’s first studio effort since 2019’s When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?, which also launched at No. 1 (April 13, 2019-dated chart), and spent a total of three nonconsecutive weeks at No. 1. The set finished 2019 as the year-end Top Billboard 200 Album and went on to win the Grammy Award for album of the year, and the 2020 Billboard Music Award for Top Billboard 200 Album. So far, the album has earned just over 5 million equivalent album units in the U.S., with 1.2 million of that in album sales.
All told, Happier is Eilish’s fifth charting effort on the Billboard 200, and third top 40-charting set, after When We All Fall Asleep and her debut chart entry Don’t Smile at Me (No. 14 peak in 2019). She also hit the chart with Live at Third Man Records (No. 55 in 2020) and Prime Day Show x Billie Eilish (No. 87 earlier this year).
The Billboard 200 chart ranks the most popular albums of the week in the U.S. based on multi-metric consumption as measured in equivalent album units. Units comprise album sales, track equivalent albums (TEA) and streaming equivalent albums (SEA). Each unit equals one album sale, or 10 individual tracks sold from an album, or 3,750 ad-supported or 1,250 paid/subscription on-demand official audio and video streams generated by songs from an album. The new Aug. 14, 2021-dated chart (where Happier Than Ever bows at No. 1) will be posted in full on Billboard’s website on Aug. 10. For all chart news, follow @billboard and @billboardcharts on both Twitter and Instagram.
Of Happier Than Ever’s 238,000 equivalent album units earned in the tracking week ending Aug. 5, album sales comprise 153,000 (making it the top-selling album of the week as well), SEA units comprise 84,000 units (equaling 113.87 million on-demand streams of the album’s 16 songs) and TEA units comprise a little more than 1,000.
Happier was preceded by five top 40-charting songs on the Billboard Hot 100 chart: “My Future,” “Therefore I Am,” “Your Power,” “Lost Cause” and “NDA.” Of those, “My Future” was first out of the gate, hitting the Hot 100 on the Aug. 15, 2020-dated chart.
Happier’s first week was supported by sturdy sales, with its 153,000 sold marking the third-biggest sales week of 2021, and the second-largest debut sales week of the year. Only Taylor Swift managed bigger sales weeks, when her 2020 album Evermore was released on vinyl in May, causing a huge surge in total sales (rising to 192,000 on the chart dated June 12) and when Fearless (Taylor’s Version) was released, selling 179,000 copies in its first week (April 24).
Happier was available in a great number of physical album formats. They include eight different colored vinyl LPs (including retail-exclusives for Amazon, independent record stores, Target, Urban Outfitters and Walmart), 10 CD variants (including a signed CD for indie stores, a version with alternative packaging hand-painted by Eilish, three premium boxed sets and a Target-exclusive edition packaged with a poster) and even multiple cassette tape variants (including a deluxe boxed set).
All those different configurations added up. Of the 153,000 Happier sold across all its permutations, physical sales comprise 129,000 (with a whopping 73,000 on vinyl, 46,000 on CD and nearly 10,000 on cassette) and 24,000 via digital download.
Happier’s vinyl sales of 73,000 were so large, the album would have been No. 1 on the Billboard 200 this week from just vinyl sales alone, as the No. 2 title, The Kid LAROI’s F*ck Love, earned 65,000 equivalent album units (down 23%). Happier’s vinyl sales start of 73,000 marks both the second-largest sales week, and debut week, for a vinyl album since MRC Data began tracking sales in 1991. The only larger week was registered by the arrival of Swift’s Evermore on vinyl earlier this year (102,000; chart dated June 12).
Evermore’s vinyl release on May 28 trailed the wide digital release of the album by five months, as the digital and streaming editions were released on Dec. 11, 2020. Evermore’s vinyl debut was aided by five months of banked pre-orders (the vinyl went up for sale in mid-December), while Eilish had three months of pre-orders (her pre-order went live at the end of April). And lastly, Evermore was initially available in three vinyl variants for its May 28 release, as compared to Eilish’s eight vinyl variants.
The 19-year-old Eilish replaces another teenager at No. 1 on the Billboard 200, as Happier bumps F*ck Love, by the 17-year-old The Kid LAROI, down to No. 2 after one week in the lead. F*ck Love earned 65,000 equivalent album units (down 23%).
The top three of the Billboard 200 albums chart is ruled by teens, as 18-year-old Olivia Rodrigo is No. 3 with her former No. 1 Sour. It dips 2-3 in its 11th week on the list.
Prince’s archival studio album Welcome 2 America debuts at No. 4, marking the 20th top 10 for the legend and his highest charting new release since 2009. (Prince died in 2016.) Recorded in 2010, but not released until July 30 of this year, Welcome starts with 55,000 equivalent album units earned. Of that sum, album sales comprise just over 50,000 (bolstered by an array of available configurations), SEA units comprise 4,000 (equaling 5.9 million on-demand streams of the set’s 12 songs) and TEA units comprise less than 1,000.
Welcome 2 America is the late legend’s highest charting new album since 2009’s Lotus Flow3r/MPLSound/Elix3r (with Bria Valente) debuted and peaked at No. 3 on the April 18, 2009-dated chart. (Prince charted higher since then, but only with previously released titles following his death in 2016, including the No. 1 The Very Best of Prince.)
Doja Cat’s Planet Her falls 3-5 on the new Billboard 200 (55,000 equivalent album units earned; down 4%) and Morgan Wallen’s former No. 1 Dangerous: The Double Album dips 4-6 (44,000 units; up less than 1%).
Rapper Isaiah Rashad lands his first top 10 album and third charting effort as The House Is Burning debuts at No. 7 with 41,000 equivalent album units earned. The album is his first since 2016’s The Sun’s Tirade, which debuted and peaked at No. 17 (Sept. 24, 2016-dated chart). Of House’s starting sum of 41,000 units, SEA units comprise 36,000 (equaling 46.89 million on-demand streams of the album’s 16 tracks), album sales comprise 5,000 and TEA units comprise a negligible sum.
Rounding out the new top 10 on the Billboard 200: Lil Baby and Lil Durk’s former No. 1 The Voice of the Heroes (6-8 with 30,000 equivalent album units earned; down 6%), Dua Lipa’s Future Nostalgia (10-9 with 29,000 units; up 2%) and Polo G’s former leader Hall of Fame (8-10 with 27,000 units; down 7%).
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